Diving Helmet

Production date
Circa 1940
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Object detail

Chilean Diving Helmet, c. 1940s or earlier (Chile)
12 bolt, 3) light (window). Crudely modelled on the Siebe Gorman standard diving dress, 'Admiralty Pattern', the manufacturer is unknown.
MARITIME TECHNOLOGY Diving Diver's helmet
Production date
Circa 1940
Production place
Height 464mm (measured from base of corselet to highest point on bonnet)
Width 380mm (measured between two widest points of of the bonnet and corselet included)
Depth 520mm (measured between the most forward projection of the bonnet/corselet and the furtherest rear projection of the bonnet/corselet)
Media/Materials description
Tinned copper, brass, glass
History and use
This helmet has been crudely constructed in two halves and soldered through the centre line to join (clearly visible on helmet) and the fittings are heavily soldered. There is no communication facilities, weight lugs or serial numbers. The bezel lugs on the front light (window) have been filed down. The helmet has the remains of red paint (suggesting 'red dive team'). Primarily used for abalone and sponge diving.

Pearl oysters, sponges and abalone have been harvested by diving (without diving gear) and dredging since the 1500s in South America. The use of helmets (hard hats) for diving lasted from about 1912 until 1963.

These helmets were used until the 1980s when over fishing and the sale of the dive helmets to collectors have all but wiped out the industry.
Associated person
Registration number


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